Stainer's Model

There are different underlying frameworks of the developed team that may affect team's performance, but what causes these loses and how much pontential productivity is lost?

Stainer's Model outlines the relation between individual abilities or resources on a team and how the team members interact.

It is summarized by the equation:

actual productivity = potential productivity − faulty group processes

Potential productivity refers to the team's best possible performance if all members perform to their full potential.

Group processes refer to the complex interactions that are required to transform a group of individuals into a collective unit.

This model implies that teams rarely perform to their full potential because of the negative effects of faulty group processes (e.g. poor communication).

Previous research indicates that team sports that require high levels of cooperation (e.g. basketball and football) are more affected by faulty group processes than sports requiring less cooperation.

This can be somewhat explained by the Ringlemann Effect, known as the phenomenon by which individual performance decreases as the number of group members increases.

Other important phenomenon is called Social Loafing which happens when individuals within a group or team forth less than 100% effort due to motivation losses.The main explanation for this phenomenon is that people feel unmotivated when working with a team, because they think that their contributions will not be evaluated or considered.

  • Ringelmann, M. (1913)

Research in this area began in 1913 with Max Ringlemann's study. The author found that when we asked a group of men to pull on a rope, they did not pull as had, or put as much effort into the activity as they did before when pulling alone.

Ringlemann concluded the main key is related to the fact the social loafer or "free-rider" believes that their personal work is not being evaluated. 

  • Latane, B, Williams, K, Harkins, S (1979)

According with Latane, "if a person is the target of social forces, increasing the number of other people may decrease the relative social pressure on each member of the group. When working alone, if the individual inputs are not identificable, he may put less effort in the task. Thus, if the person is diving up to the work to be performed, or the amount of reward he expects to receive, he will work less hard in groups than by himself".